AeroGarden (Modified) To Grow Broccoli

Peat's picture

Whilst I await some parts for my hydroponic grow room, I wondered about how to grow some broccoli in the AeroGarden. As it stands the basic AG cannot grow broccoli due to it's small grow holes, so, why not rip it all apart and convert it to something that can...

Briefly, here's how it's all done - although it's an involved process which requires some hydroponic parts (hydroton, air pump + airline, airstone, net pots and rockwool - or some other grow medium).

1. Remove the complete central column and pump from inside, plus also the front hinged flap.

2. Using the AG as a template, cut out a new top grow base - I used plywood.

3. Cut out a hole for a 2" net pot which will take the hydroton and grow our broccoli.

4. Wrap everything in black plastic bags to keep the water away from the wood. I also used heat reflective tape to cover the top.

New top grow base covered in plastic and reflective tape.   Underneath   All completed and mounted.

5. Put your airstone inside and connect it all up to your air pump, cover the electrical contacts at the back with plastic to stop them getting wet. We'll leave everything turned all off at the moment while the seeds germinate.

6. Germinate your seeds first in rockwool in a warm dark place. I planted two in case one did not sprout.

Seeds placed in rockwool ready to germinate.

7. Once they have sprouted give them light from the AeroGarden lights, grow them a little while longer before transferring them to your net pot and hydroton.

8. Add your hydroponic nutrients (or spare AG tablets) and grow your broccoli...

 

I'll expand on some more of this as I go through the process of getting this grown.  I know it's a little involved but what the heck, something different.

 

Weekly Grow Pictures (Click to Enlarge)

5 Days Growth   Week 2   Week 3   Week 4   Week 5   Week 6   Week 7   Week 8   Week 9   Week 10   Week 11   Week 12   Week 13   Week 14   Final Picture - End of Grow

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jessijordan (not verified)
I have tons of lettuce seeds

I have tons of lettuce seeds left over and yes I could buy more sponges from Park seed but then I wouldnt get the new liquid nutes

The AG kits are now at  the low low price of $9.95 lol

we shall see...

Ginger
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It's easy to just buy romaine

It's easy to just buy romaine seeds anywhere right now, though - put 5 in each pod, and problem solved for under $2. I'm enjoying Little Caesar romaine atm.

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jessijordan (not verified)
Yep Gisette, u know me... all

Yep Gisette, u know me... all or nothing kinda girl! My AGs are just tanks now. They have little to no air bubbling power on their own. If I had not gotten the pump & supplies b4 I would be so mad right now!

Hey Peat

Good to see u still doing fun things! I wish that broccoli would have worked out. I love broccoli too!

I havent ordered from AG but I probably will if the romaine lettuce kit I have left over from last year doesnt sprout. If thats the case then the new kit should come with the liquid nutes & we can see.

Peat
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Jessi, it's great to see you

Jessi, it's great to see you back here again - you were missed.

I don't know if the new AG liquids work better than the tabs, they will certainly be easier to use and not break down into a sticky mess though.

Ginger
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Such energy, Jessi, all

Such energy, Jessi, all planted at once! Are all your minis operating just as tanks now? No hoods or internal airpumps?

I haven't bought a kit from AG for a long time, so dunno how the liquid nutes work vs. the tabs. I have lots of seeds, pod stuffing, and GH Flora nutes, so... Though, the tabs sure are easier than getting around to mixing nutes, and I've been bad about that lately. Maybe I should get some out of the freezer and just toss 'em in.

Moderator. Author of Indoor SaladEcigs 102, and the Calm Act climate apocalyptic series.

jessijordan (not verified)
Hey Gisette! thank u for the

Hey Gisette!

thank u for the warm welcome back!

Planted some bibb & romaine lettuce, mini yellow tomatoes, Basil, & thyme in my 4 mini aerogardens today and of course my fav broccoli, arugula & radish microgreens. Tomorrow I'l do some pea shoots & wheat grass. I am keeping it small in my apt (not like last time!) but mom & I are going to plan a garden for my grandparents back yard. Gonna have to map that one out & over the next few days.

I looked at the AG website for the 1st time in what feels like forever! I see they now have liquid nutrients. Does anyone know how well they work? (I still have tons of tabs in the freezer & wont need any for a few weeks but I wanna know)

 

Ginger
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Jessi!!! Welcome

Jessi!!! Welcome back!

Whatcha growin'?

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jessijordan (not verified)
Very interesting experiment

Very interesting experiment Peat!

 

Long time no speak everyone but I am back to growing again.

Peat
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Yes, you crop the head

Yes, you crop the head initially. It then sprouts lots of, smaller, heads which you carry on cropping. I then think you carry on doing this for 2 or so months afterwards...

It was not worth it in my case, the plant should have grown to harvest by week 13 - the AG and temperatures conspired against me, I now know where I went wrong.

I do want another go at it though, in the garden and in hydro.

Ginger
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Well, now you know its size

Well, now you know its size and how long it takes - is this worth growing indoors? I'm not a big broccoli fan. What the gain, growing this at home instead of buying at the supermarket? It grows to terminal head size, then you crop whole head, right?

Moderator. Author of Indoor SaladEcigs 102, and the Calm Act climate apocalyptic series.

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